4752
South Dakota
Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, the Badlands: A Family Adventure
Enjoy a classic American adventure with your family as you visit the monuments of the Mount Rushmore region, horse ride a Western trail and dig for fossils near a mammoth sinkhole.
Rating (5)
Program No. 4752RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,249
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6 days
5 nights
13 meals
5 B 3 L 5 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Opening Dinner
Keystone, SD
D
K Bar S Lodge

Dinner: In the dining facility at the Lodge, enjoy a dinner buffet with salad, entrée, and dessert plus coffee, tea, or water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow participants, settle in to your room, and get a good night’s sleep for the full day tomorrow.

DAY
2
Custer State Park, Trail Ride, Crazy Horse, Evening Program
Keystone, SD
B,L,D
K Bar S Lodge

Activity note: Long pants and boots or tennis shoes are required for horseback riding. A riding helmet will be supplied. Coach time varies throughout the day with frequent stops.

Breakfast: In the Lodge dining facility, enjoy a breakfast buffet with hot and cold cereals, waffles with fruit topping, hard-boiled eggs, rotating main dishes, pastries, bagels, yogurt, fruit, coffee, tea, milk and an assortment of juices.

Morning: We kick off our week of adventure with a morning field trip, led by our expert group leader, to Custer State Park. General Custer's expedition discovered gold here in 1874, and that began the rush of settlers to the Black Hills. We'll stop at the Visitor Center where we'll get a close up look at the Park's history, mysteries, landscapes and wildlife that combine to create this diverse and beautiful park. Next we'll take what we've learned and travel the Wildlife Loop road in search of buffalo, wild burrows, prairie dogs, elk, white tail deer and more. At the end of the loop, put on your cowboy hat for a fun filled hour long horseback trail ride led by experienced wranglers.

Lunch: Enjoy a plated table service lunch with beverage, at the popular Blue Bell Lodge in Custer State Park.

Afternoon: In an effort to honor the rich heritage and traditions of Native Americans, Sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski and Lakota Chief Henry Standing Bear set out to carve a mountain just south of Mount Rushmore that began in 1948. Today, the Crazy Horse Memorial campus offers visitors breath-taking views of the ongoing carving from its viewing veranda. This afternoon the group leader will provide an overview about Crazy Horse, it's campus that serves as a repository for Native American artifacts, arts, and crafts and the Native American Educational & Cultural Center. We'll also partake in a Native Medicine Pouch activity led by expert Crazy Horse staff.

Dinner: Lodge buffet.

Evening: Learn through a fun and interactive hands-on activity about the scaling and creation of Mount Rushmore.

DAY
3
Mount Rushmore, Alpine Slide, Journey Program, Campfire, Lighting Ceremony
Keystone, SD
B,L,D
K Bar S Lodge

Activity note: Walking indoors and out along groomed paths, up to one half mile. Standing up to one hour at a time in museums and outdoors, some stairs. Minimal times of 15 to 30 minutes on the coach.

Breakfast: At the Lodge.

Morning: Under the guidance of our expert Group Leader, explore our Shrine of Democracy - Mount Rushmore National Memorial. Danish-American sculptor Gutzon Borglum, the creator of Mount Rushmore, wrote: “The purpose of the memorial is to communicate the founding, expansion, preservation, and unification of the United States with colossal statues of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt.” Borglum intended his monumental sculpture to be not only a memorial to four of our greatest Presidents, but a Shrine to Democracy. Why these four? Washington led the nascent United States to win independence from Great Britain. Jefferson was the author of the Declaration of Independence. Roosevelt the “trust buster” ensured the rights of working people and was instrumental in building the Panama Canal. Lincoln led the country through the Civil War. Borglum began work in 1927 and continued until his death in 1941, when his son, Lincoln Borglum, took it on and ended work later that year. Feel free to expand your exploration of Mount Rushmore with an optional 1/2 mile walk on the Presidential Trail to Borglum’s studio. Here you will learn more about the monument, its construction, and the artist whose vision produced one of America’s most iconic symbols. Next, discover Mount Rushmore from a different angle as you ride a chair lift up to the top of an adjacent ridge. Enjoy the view as well as the ride back down on the lift or take the option of feeling the wind in your hair as you ride the alpine slide, at your own desired pace, back down the hill.

Lunch: A buffet of soups or salads and sandwiches will be provided at the K Bar S Lodge. Water, tea and coffee will also be available.

Afternoon: This afternoon travel to the Journey Museum and learn about the importance and hardships of Dakota settlers and pioneers through a hands-on activity taught by the educational staff at the Journey.

Dinner: Lodge buffet.

Evening: Following dinner, enjoy bonding as a group around a campfire. Later tonight (weather and seasonal availability permitting), we will attend the Lighting Ceremony at Mount Rushmore - a patriotic program presented in the open, outdoor auditorium.

DAY
4
Badlands National Park, Gold Panning, Native American Dancer
Keystone, SD
B,D
K Bar S Lodge

Activity note: Walking outdoors along board walks and groomed paths, up to one half mile. Coach time 1.5 hours to Badlands National Park with expert interpretation, stops and beautiful scenery along the way.

Breakfast: At the Lodge.

Morning: Today, under the expert guidance of our group leader, discover a land of extremes. Learn how a once subtropical paradise, complete with exotic sea creatures and dinosaurs, evolved into the desolate Badlands of today. At first glance this moon-like terrain may seem inhospitable but, look closely and you'll discover the secrets of life that lie with-in.

Lunch: This lunch at Wall Drug in Wall, has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy the food of your choice. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Afternoon: This afternoon obtain a new appreciation for those who blazed the trail of gold discovery decades before. Instructed by the group leader, try your hand at imitating the miners from long ago by panning for gold, minerals and special gem stones from a Black Hills creek.

Dinner: Lodge buffet.

Evening: Tonight's instructor will captivate us with oral stories and traditional Native American dance.

DAY
5
Mammoth Site, Junior Paleo Dig, Swimming, Final Banquet
Keystone, SD
B,L,D
K Bar S Lodge

Activity note: Remember to pack your swimming suit and towel or towel rental money for today's swimming activity. Standing and walking indoors up to one hour. Coach time one hour to Mammoth Site with expert interpretation and beautiful scenery along the way.

Breakfast: At the Lodge.

Morning: This morning adventure awaits you! Travel back in time when Ice Age mammoths, camels, and giant short-faced bears roamed the Great Plains of North America. More than 26,000 years ago a sudden collapse of a sinkhole, with a warm spring percolating from the bottom, filled the sinkhole and created an ideal watering hole for animals to quench their thirst. Unfortunately the sinkhole proved to be too slippery and steep for the animals to retreat, thus creating a death trap for large Columbian and Woolly Mammoths. Investigate this historic event by visiting the world's largest Columbian Mammoth exhibit and research center for Pleistocene studies. Go behind the scenes to the Mammoth Site Laboratory and learn more about specific bones, fossils and stories behind the Mammoths demise from the museum's collector and curator. Become a Junior Paleontologist as you help dig for signs of prehistoric life.

Lunch: At a popular restaurant next to the Mammoth Site enjoy a sandwich bar with water, tea and coffee included.

Afternoon: This afternoon immerse yourself in the natural warm springs of Evans Plunge. Spend a refreshing, fun-filled afternoon in the World's largest naturally warm rejuvenating mineral water indoor pool (87 degrees F). This sparkling spring water flows from an enormous thermal spring Water slides add a little thrill for those young at heart!

Dinner: Tonight, enjoy a casual final dinner together at the Lodge.

DAY
6
Program Concludes
Keystone, SD
B

Breakfast: At the Lodge. This concludes our program. Please note that hotel check-out is by 11:00 a.m. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best Wishes for all your journeys!






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